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A past Xmas Party at HRO....

THURSDAY EDITION: K1JEK XMAS PARTY TODAY AT NOON, due to medical reasons in the family, I will again have to miss it but I am sure all attending will have a good time....ARRL 10-Meter Contest 0000Z, Dec 14 to 2400Z, Dec 15 .....Russia's only aircraft carrier sinking and on fire.....Today's Asshat Award goes to......How does this stuff even happen?.....OFF THE GRID HAM RADIO.......Coming up this Thursday (12/12) at 9 pm EST on Ham Talk Live, Katie Allen, WY7YL from Ham Radio Outlet will be on the show to talk about holiday gift ideas for hams! Also, we will reveal some special ham holiday traditions.....

Tune into Ham Talk Live! Thursday night at 9 pm EST (Friday 0200Z) by going to hamtalklive.com. When the audio player indicates LIVE, just hit the play button!

If you miss the show live, you can listen on demand anytime also at hamtalklive.com; or a podcast version is on nearly all podcast sites a few minutes after the live show is over. Some sites include Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, SoundCloud, and iHeart Podcasts; and it's also available on YouTube. A replay is also broadcast on WTWW 5085 AM on Saturday nights at approximately 6:30 pm Eastern.

Be sure to CALL in with your questions and comments by calling 812-638-4261 live during the call-in segment of the show. You can also tweet your questions before or during the show to @HamTalkLive.

Honolulu, Hawaii

In a recent interview with the Honolulu Board of Water (BWS) supply we sat down with Ernest Lau, WH6GAJ & Manager and Chief Engineer at BWS, Ms. Kathleen Elliot-Pahinui, Information Officer (IO), Stella Bernardo, WH6GDM, IS II and Ham Coordinator and Raleigh Ferdun, KH6EN, to discuss their involvement with amateur radio. (Raleigh is not an employee of the BOW)

The Board of Water Supply (BWS) recently encouraged their employees to take an amateur radio class and to get their license. The class was held during the work day and taught by Raleigh, KH6EN. It was voluntary and to encourage employees, the initial license fee was paid by the BWS for the employees who take the exam. The BWS also loaned the class books to all attendees. The classes were held at the BWS.

Why would the Board of Water Supply in Honolulu take this action?

According to Ernest Lau, the Manager and Chief Engineer and call sign WH6GAJ, he got involved in a Community Emergency Response Team, CERT, with the “Be Ready Manoa Group”, and took the license class in early 2019 at the Salvation Army. He realized then that it could be a great help with backup emergency communications if a disaster event happened, thus impacting the supply of water to about 1.0 million residents. So, Ernest asked the question, “What if we offered these classes so other employees could get their amateur radio license and serve as a backup to our communications plans?”

A big concern for the BWS is restoring drinking water to the island in the event of a disaster and to do that they would have to be able to communicate in order to coordinate repair and restoration of the water systems island-wide. The BWS uses Land Mobile Radios (LMR) and repeaters as part of day-to-day operations and amateur radio could be instrumental in the communications backup plan.

Ernest mentioned Hurricane Maria that devastated Puerto Rico as a Category 5 Storm in September 2017, Hurricane Lane which tracked close to Hawaii as a Category 4 storm in late August 2018, and Hurricane Olivia just a few weeks later in September 2018. “It’s just a matter of WHEN and not IF Hawaii gets hit”, Ernest stated.

New NASA eBook reveals insights of Earth seen at night from space

Earth has many stories to tell, even in the dark of night. Earth at Night, NASA’s new 200-page ebook, is now available online and includes more than 150 images of our planet in darkness as captured from space by Earth-observing satellites and astronauts on the International Space Station over the past 25 years.

The images reveal how human activity and natural phenomena light up the darkness around the world, depicting the intricate structure of cities, wildfires and volcanoes raging, auroras dancing across the polar skies, moonlight reflecting off snow and deserts, and other dramatic earthly scenes.

“Earth at Night explores the brilliance of our planet when it is in darkness,” wrote Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, in the book’s foreword. “The book is a compilation of stories depicting the interactions between science and wonder. I am pleased to share this visually stunning and captivating exploration of our home planet.”

In addition to the images, the book tells how scientists use these observations to study our changing planet and aid decision makers in such areas as sustainable energy use and disaster response.

NASA brings together technology, science, and unique global Earth observations to provide societal benefits and strengthen our nation. The agency makes its Earth observations freely and openly available to everyone for use in developing solutions to important global issues such as changing freshwater availability, food security and human health.

For more information about NASA's Earth science programs, visit:

NOAA/NASA Panel Concurs that Solar Cycle 25 will Peak in July 2025

The NOAA/NASA-co-chaired international Solar Cycle Prediction Panel has released its latest forecast for to forecast Solar Cycle 25. The panel’s consensus calls for a peak in July 2025 (±8 months), with a smoothed sunspot number of 115. The panel agreed that Cycle 25 will be of average intensity and similar to Cycle 24. The panel additionally concurred that the solar minimum between Cycles 24 and 25 will occur in April 2020 (±6 months). If the solar minimum prediction is correct, this would make Solar Cycle 24 the seventh longest on record at 11.4 years. In its preliminary forecast released last April, the scientists on the panel forecast that Solar Cycle 25 would likely be weak, much like the current Cycle 24.

“Solar Cycle 25 may have a slow start, but is anticipated to peak with solar maximum occurring between 2023 and 2026, and a sunspot range of 95 to 130. This is well below the average number of sunspots,” the panel said last spring, adding with “high confidence” that Cycle 25 “should break the trend of weakening solar activity seen over the past four cycles.” The panel said the expectation that Cycle 25 would be comparable in size to Cycle 24 suggests that the steady decline in solar cycle amplitude seen from Cycle 21 through Cycle 24 has ended and that there is no indication of an approaching “Maunder-type” minimum. Cycle 24 peaked in April 2014 with an average sunspot number of 82.

The Solar Cycle Prediction Panel forecasts the number of sunspots expected for solar maximum, along with the timing of the peak and minimum solar activity levels for the cycle. It is comprised of scientists representing NOAA, NASA, the International Space Environment Services, and other US and international scientists. 

5 watt railway level crossing radars at 24 GHz

Ofcom has published proposals for new regulations regarding the use of certain short range wireless devices, including 5 watt Railway Level Crossing Radar Sensor Systems in 24.100-24.350 GHz band

Short range devices include baby monitors, keyless entry cards, alarms and some Wi-Fi systems, which all rely on spectrum. We are consulting on making new regulations regarding the frequencies and technical requirements for using these devices in the 874 to 876 and 915 to 921 MHz spectrum bands. This implements a European Commission decision to harmonise these bands for short range devices.

Ofcom are also consulting on revoking an existing licence exemption for railway level-crossing radar sensor systems. These systems are used by Network Rail to monitor railway intersections and detect obstacles that may cause damage to moving trains. Ofcom are proposing to introduce a national licence for these systems, which will allow them to be used in more locations across the rail network.


Dec 1-14, 2019
DXCC: Gambia
Callsign: C56BR
Source: DXW.Net (Nov 30, 2019)
Info: By ON4BR; HF; CW SSB FT8

Dec 2-20, 2019
DXCC: Burkina Faso
Callsign: XT2AW
Source: DXW.Net (May 12, 2019)
Info: By DF2WO fm Ouagadougou; focus on 160 80 60m; CW SSB RTTY FT8; hexbeam, verticals

Dec 2, 2019-Jan 5, 2020
DXCC: Ecuador
Callsign: HC5AGT
Source: TDDX (Oct 7, 2019)
Info: By EA5RM fm Loja and possbily fm Guayaquil; 40-10m; SSB + digital

Dec 3-24, 2019
DXCC: Burkina Faso
Callsign: XT2AW
Source: TDDX (Nov 26, 2019)
Info: By DF2WO fm Ouagadougou; mainly 160 80 60m; FT8, some SSB CW; hexbeam, verticals; spare time operation

Dec 4-13, 2019
DXCC: St Martin
Callsign: TO9W
Source: TDDX (May 22, 2019)
Info: By K9NU K9NU W9ILY N9AOL K9EL FS4WBS; 160-6m, focus on 160 80 40m; mainly CW FT8; regular uploads to Club Log; see Web site for full details

Dec 6-21, 2019
DXCC: Turks & Caicos
Callsign: VP5 NEW (Dec09)
Source: 4L5A (Dec 9, 2019)
Info: By WQ7X as VP5/WQ7X fm Providenciales I (IOTA NA-002); 40-10m; CW SSB; QSL also OK via WQ7X direct

Dec 6-27, 2019
DXCC: New Caledonia
Callsign: FK
Source: 4L5A (Nov 4, 2019)
Info: By DB1RUL as FK/DB1RUL fm Grand Terre I 6-9 Dec, Poingam I 13-15 Dec, Ouvea I 18-21 Dec, Ile de Pine 23-27 Dec; HF; FT8; QSL also OK via DB1RUL

Dec 10-19, 2019
DXCC: St Kitts & Nevis
Callsign: V47JA
Source: W5JON (Nov 20, 2019)
Info: By W5JON fm Calypso Bay; 160-6m; SSB FT8; yagi, verticals; QSL also OK via W5JON direct

Dec 10-23, 2019
DXCC: Maldives
Callsign: 8Q7XY
QSL: DF3XY Direct
Source: TDDX (Oct 22, 2019)
Info: By 40 30 20 15 10m; mainly FT8 SSB

Dec 11-20, 2019
DXCC: Bhutan
Callsign: A5 NEW (Dec06)
QSL: Club Log OQRS
Source: DXW.Net (Dec 6, 2019)
Info: By JH1AJT DJ9ZB KO8SCA ON5UR E21EIC as A5B, A50BOC, A50BPC; 160-6m; CW SSB FT4 FT8; QSL also OK via JH1AJT: PO Box 8, Oiso, Naka-gun, Kanagawa 255-0003, Japan

Dec 12-31, 2019
DXCC: Honduras
Callsign: HR5
Source: TDDX (Nov 29, 2019)
Info: By F2JD as HR5/F2JD fm Copan-Ruinas; 160-6m; CW SSB + digital; QSL OK B/d; operation to continue until Apr 4, 2020

Dec 13-15, 2019
DXCC: Senegal
Callsign: 6V1A
Source: 4L5A (Oct 22, 2019)
Info: By 6W7JX 6W1PZ 6W1KI 6W1QL 6W1PA 6W1SQ 6W1SV 6W1GF 6W1TA fm Goree I (IOTA AF-045); HF; SSB CW; QSL also OK via 6W1QL

Dec 13-20, 2019
DXCC: Georgia
Callsign: 4L
Source: TA1HZ (Nov 2, 2019)
Info: By TA1HZ as 4L/TA1HZ; @4L6QC; focus on low bands; mainly FT8 FT4; 100w; QSL OK via TA1HZ direct

Dec 14, 2019-Jan 8, 2020
DXCC: Thailand
Callsign: HS0ZNR
Source: TDDX (Oct 1, 2019)
Info: By VK2BY fm Nam Yuen, Ubon Ratchathani; 80-10m; SSB FT8; 200w; Hex Beam; logs will be uploaded to Club Log

Dec 15-21, 2019
DXCC: Ecuador
Callsign: HC5JLT
Source: 4L5A (Sep 12, 2019)
Info: By W9HT; HF + 6m; SSB CW + digital

Dec 17-31, 2019
DXCC: Rotuma
Callsign: 3D2AG/p
QSL: 3D2AG PayPal
Source: TDDX (Nov 29, 2019)
Info: By 3D2AG; focus on 160 80 60m; CW SSB FT8/FT4; see Web for further details; to continue until mid-Jan 2020


WEDNESDAY EDITION: 3 inches of snow here this morning, its going to be a long winter and a lot of ham radio to keep me sane.....K1JEK XMAS PARTY REMINDER: THURSDAY DECEMBER 12 AT THE SALEM HRO STORE FOLLOWED BY LUNCH AT THE CHINESE RESTAURANT NEXT STORE...Word has it from my ears on 3919 is that  #1 is in contact with the Discovery Channel for a documentary next year, true story. What a reality show that would be!...Short video on the new NanoVNA analyzer.....

The magic of Christmas: Your child could speak to Santa Claus via radio

ST. GEORGE — Christmas is fast approaching. And if your child is tired of seeing the same old mall Santa Claus every year, or the jolly old elf has lost a bit of his luster, how about actually talking to Santa on a radio live?

It happens every year. Amateur Radio operators around the United States activate the Santa Net every night starting at 6:30 p.m. MST through Christmas Eve.

“Christmastime is a very special time for our nets every year,” Pete Thomson, KE5GGY of Denton, Texas and the lead operator of the Santa Net said. “We enjoy helping young people and their families have a shared Christmas experience that they’ll always remember. And we’re thrilled to introduce young people to the excitement of amateur radio.”

Thomson said the Santa Net has grown beyond his wildest expectations.

Public domain image from 1922. SoUtahNow.com

“In our first year, we connected 10 kids to Santa on Ham Radio and it’s grown steadily since,” Thomson said. “For 2019, we’re expecting over 700 children to participate.”

While an amateur radio license is required to talk to Santa, several hams in the Southern Utah area have expressed a willingness to assist children in Dixie to talk directly to Santa Claus, if their parents or siblings are not licensed. Contact the Dixie Amateur Radio Club at w7drc@arrl.org to be put in touch with a ham that would be able to assist. Please remember, these operators are volunteers and only have so much time to assist.

For those parents or others lucky enough to have an amateur radio license and equipment, Santa can be found nightly on 3.916 MHz beginning at 6:30 p.m. Mountain time through Christmas Eve.

The American Radio Relay League is the United States’ national association for amateur radio. Their website states that, “Amateur Radio (ham radio) is a popular hobby and service that brings people, electronics and communication together. People use ham radio to talk across town, around the world, or even into space, all without the Internet or cell phones. It’s fun, social, educational, and can be a lifeline during times of need.”

Amateur radio operators around the world participate daily in the hobby. But some think it’s more than a hobby – that it’s magic.

“Amateur Radio is all about magic,” Kevin O’Dell of Ardmore, Oklahoma wrote on the ARRL website. “It’s magic to talk to a complete stranger on the other side of the world while sitting in my car watching my son’s football practice. It’s magic to watch the eyes of a child light up when they talk to an astronaut on the International Space Station. It’s magic to see the relief in a mother’s face because the Amateur Radio operators providing communications at the county fair found her lost child. It’s magic to see the excitement on the face of my son after getting his license and making his first contact. And who said magic isn’t real?”

For more information about becoming licensed and joining the growing ranks of amateur radio operators in southern Utah, contact the Dixie Amateur Radio Club at w7drc@arrl.org. And you’ll be ready to talk to Santa Claus in 2020.

VP6R Pitcairn Island photo book

Nodir, EY8MM, has put together a spectacular photo book of the recent VP6R Dxpedition.

The photo book is 239 pages and is available to browse through or purchase at:

South Orkney Islands DXpedition news

The following update was sent out by Gene, K5GS, on the VP8/VP8DXU South Orkney Islands (AN-008) DXpedition [edited]:

* Team Staffing -- We're sorry to report that Dave, WD5COV, had to leave
the project, replacing Dave is:
Alan Cheshire, VK6CQ -- Originally from Scotland, Alan has lived in Perth, Western Australia for many years and was first licensed as G4EEL in 1975 whilst studying for his commercial Merchant Marine Radio Officer ticket.
He holds degrees in Physics & Telecoms Engineering and is a consultant telecom engineer in the offshore oil and gas industry.
He has over 5 years Antarctic and sub-Antarctic experience with the British Antarctic Survey, Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions and Antarctic Logistics & Expeditions and has over-wintered four times with the callsigns VP8PJ and VK0LD. Other DX callsigns over the years: A4XYF, VS5AC, V85AC, P29AC, VK8AC, 9V1DX, 9V0A and CE9/VK0LD.
An A1 CW Op, he gave many an all time new one as VK0MM from Macquarie
Island over the year 2000 and was also a member of the 2016 VK0EK Heard
Island team. When not pounding away on a Morse key, Alan plays a mean
bluegrass banjo.

* Equipment Shipping -- After a short delay the equipment was accepted by our freight agent, placed on pallets, shrink wrapped and loaded into a sea container. The container was trucked to Oakland, California and after US Customs formalities it began its journey to Coronel, Chile. Expected arrival is December 21st. Subsequently, the shipment will be taken to Punta Arenas, Chile.

* Fundraising -- The estimated cost of this project is 310,000-325,000 (USDs), with the most expensive line items being the ship, freight and cold weather shelters. We expect fuel prices to remain within the contracted range, with minimal foreign exchange fluctuation. Our bills are paid in: US and New Zealand Dollars and Euros, we closely follow currency trends.
We appreciate the support from the worldwide DX and amateur radio organizations. Forty-nine clubs / foundations have signed on, and equally important are the over 400 individuals who have already supported the project, especially our 47 Premier Sponsors who each donated 200(USDs), or more. While we still have a long way to go, we continue to make progress towards our goal of the radio team paying 50% of the project cost with sponsorships paying the remainder.
The corporate sponsors: Elecraft, DX Engineering, WIMO, RadioSport, Low Band Systems, Spiderbeam, Rig Expert, Mastrant and Clamcleat are instrumental to the success of this project. We know that Max at ON5UR Print, working with our QSL Manager Tim, M0URX, will deliver a high quality QSL card.
Our next major milestones include finalizing the radio operating schedule and assigning team member responsibilities for camp setup, radio and antenna installation.
Thanks for your continued interest and support of our project.
Good luck in the pileups.

73, Team VP8/VP8DXU

Website: https://sorkney.com/

Next Kids Day is Saturday, January 4

The first Saturday in January is Kids Day — the time to get youngsters on the air to share in the joy and fun that Amateur Radio can provide. Kids Day gets under way on Saturday, January 4, at 1800 UTC and concludes at 2359 UTC.

Sponsored by the Boring (Oregon) Amateur Radio Club, this event has a simple exchange, suitable for younger operators: First name, age, location, and favorite color. After that, the contact can be as long or as short as each participant prefers. Kids Day is the perfect opportunity to open your shack door and invite kids over to see what Amateur Radio has to offer.

Details are on the ARRL website. 

Amateur Radio News from Antarctica

In Antarctica, Chris Cianflone, W2RTO, is on the air from KC4USV at McMurdo Station, mostly operating FT8 on 14.075 MHz. The station has a tribander for 20, 15, and 10 meters and a Kenwood TS-480 feeding a 500 W amplifier, which, he said “sounds like it’s on its last legs.” Given the 24 hours of daylight this time of year and the challenging terrain, the lower bands are unusable in Antarctica, but a dipole may be in the offing for 40 meters later in the season. Cianflone is in Antarctica getting research sites up and running with their communications needs. He heads home on February 21. QSL via K7MT.

Operators at KC4USV log on paper, and these logs are keystroked into an ADIF file. Cianflone said the station is in a poor location and endures local noise from generators and other transmitters. He will try to be on the air at 0000 UTC for about 30 minutes a day, Monday through Saturday, and at 0600 UTC.

Marco de Pas, DK5SXQ (ex-IK5SQX), will arrive in Antarctica on December 20, remaining into February, operating as IA0/DK5SXQ from the Italian-French base Concordia. He’s in Antarctica to install a LIDAR (light detection and ranging) system but expects to have some spare time to operate.

Seba Gleich, SQ1SGB, plans to be on the air from VP8HAL at the Halley VI Research Station until February 8. If he is successful in erecting an antenna, he’ll operate on FT8, JT65, and SSB on 40 and 20 meters. QSL through EB7DX. — Thanks to The Daily DX


TUESDAY EDITION: Snow is gone, it's 60 degrees out this morning....love New England weather, snow expected tonight....Here are some cool gadgets for Xmas....Another federal loophole that needs fixing...Can you outrun an avalanche?......

SAQ, Sweden’s Alexanderson Alternator, Announces Scheduled Christmas Eve Transmission

SAQ, the call sign of the 1920s vintage Alexanderson transmitter in Grimeton, Sweden, is set to be on the air for its annual Christmas Eve transmission. SAQ transmits CW with up to 200 kW on 17.2 kHz. Tune-up is scheduled to begin at around 0730 UTC, with the holiday message transmitted on December 24 at 0800 UTC. SAQ will livestream the event. SAQ has introduced a new reception report form for listeners and has asked listeners not to send SAQ reception reports via email. The SK6SAQ amateur radio station will be active on 7.035 kHz and 14.035 MHz CW or 3.755 MHz SSB, with two stations on the air most of the time. Given its age, the Alexanderson alternator does not always function as intended. The transmitter experienced a failure during its scheduled UN Day transmission on October 24.

Can you hear me now? Xmas Party this Thursday at noon at HRO

Iranian radar in 40m ham radio band

The latest IARU-R1 Monitoring System newsletter reports a radar in northern Iran has been operating on the 7 MHz amateur radio band

On November 13, the radar was observed with a center frequency of 7000 kHz using Amplitude Modulation On Pulse (AMOP) at 81 Sweeps Per Sercond (SPS), covering 6978–7022 kHz.

The International Amateur Radio Union Monitoring System (IARUMS) Region 1 November 2019 newsletter can be read at

Recordings of military transmissions can be found on the Signal Identification Guide Wiki at

Reports of Amateur Band intruders can be logged on the IARU Region 1 Monitoring System Logger at

Monitor the short wave bands on-line with a web based SDR receiver at

Radio Caroline North December

Join us on the River Blackwater for the final Radio Caroline North broadcast of 2019 over the weekend 14th - 15th December

This month's sponsor is Rush Jets and our on-air competition is sponsored by Rush Jets and sister company Inflight Goods, who are kindly providing three gents Rotary watches as prizes.

We're LIVE from our historic radio-ship Ross Revenge on the River Blackwater, Essex. Listen in on 648 AM in the South and South-East, on 1368 AM in the North and North-West courtesy of our friends at Manx Radio, around the world online here, on various apps and radio players, and on your smart speakers – "Hey Alexa (or Siri), play Radio Caroline!"

We would love to hear from you – send your emails direct to the  Ross studios at memories@radiocaroline
 during the broadcast.


Recent 3000km+ opening on 144 MHz between New Zealand and Australia reported

On the 1st of December 2019, there was an extensive Sporadic-E opening on 144 MHz in the south-eastern part of Australia.

While this allowed contacts on the 2-metre band between various Australian regions, the most remarkable opening was probably between Adelaide (VK5) and the northern tip of New Zealand.

Both VK5GF and VK5AKK managed to hear the WSPR beacon ZL1SIX, a distance just over 3,170 kms and a remarkable distance for 2-metres.
To explain that from a European perspective, that is the same as say London to Cyprus or across the North Atlantic from Ireland to Newfoundland.

More info...

MONDAY EDITION: K1JEK XMAS PARTY REMINDER: THURSDAY DECEMBER 12 AT THE SALEM HRO STORE FOLLOWED BY LUNCH AT THE CHINESE RESTAURANT NEXT STORE...K0BOT Dick from the maritime service net  is planning the 20 meter Santa Net for Sunday Dec 22, Monday Dec 23 and Tuesday Dec 24.  Planned times are 2:00PM EST through 6:00 PM EST. freq 14325.....Sports Update: The Patriots got beat, forget the officials screwing up...we got beat by a better team, Brady looks his age, he doesn't have receivers he trusts and boy is he slow to react and make good decisions, the running game is non-existent, ....it's ok, the team had to decline eventually, let's see how Coach Belichick can salvage the season!...

ARRL calls for New York University Petition to be dismissed

ARRL has asked the FCC to dismiss a Petition filed by New York University (NYU) seeking Declaratory Ruling on the encoded message rule

The ARRL say:

ARRL has asked FCC to dismiss a Petition for Declaratory Ruling filed by New York University (NYU), that in ARRL’s view proposes a new interpretation of the rule — Section 97.113(a)(4) — prohibiting “messages encoded for the purpose of obscuring their meaning.”

In its December 2 filing, ARRL said NYU’s call to “clarify” the rule’s meaning to prohibit “effectively encrypted or encoded messages, including messages that cannot be readily decoded over the air for true meaning,” is not only vague but could weaken the prohibition against encryption.

ARRL pointed out that the FCC rule prohibiting “messages encoded for the purpose of obscuring their meaning,” is essentially the same as what appears in the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Radio Regulations applying to all countries. ARRL made clear that it continues to support rules prohibiting encrypted messages on the amateur bands, even for limited emergency communication purposes, and the ARRL Board reiterated that opposition last July.

In its comments, ARRL said that NYU’s request that the FCC adopt its suggested language would introduce ambiguity and confusion in the application of a rule that’s clearly understood to prohibit encrypted messages. ARRL noted that Morse code is encoded and would fall within the prohibition as proposed by NYU. “The very fact that messages sent in CW are ‘encoded’ by any definition of the term starkly demonstrates the problem with this proposal,” ARRL said.

Read the full ARRL story at

ICQPodcast - CW Invaders Game / Training Aid

In this episode, Martin M1MRB is joined by Edmund Spicer M0MNG, Matthew Nassau M0NJX, Dan Romanchik KB6NU and Ruth Willet KM4LAO to discuss the latest Amateur / Ham Radio news. Colin M6BOY rounds up the news in brief and this episode’s feature is - CW Invaders Game / Training Aid


We would like to thank Peter Caffery, Daniel Sullivan (KC3NKF) and our monthly and annual subscription donors for keeping the podcast advert free. To donate, please visit - http://www.icqpodcast.com/donate

News stories include: -
• New Ham Radio Antenna Bill being Drafted
• Happy Birthday FUNcube-1 (AO73)
• Halfords Make Radio Signals Travel 'Super-Fast'
• Proposed FCC Auction of C-Band Increases Competition for Allocation
• Clearing Radio Amateurs out of 3.4 GHz
• UK Beginners licence - KB6NU
• SARL Novice Award
• Ham Radio Day Aboard the RMS Queen Mary
• Hamvention Admission, Fees to Increase

The ICQPodcast can be downloaded from http://www.icqpodcast.com

Zorro back in Bhutan

Zorro, JH1AJT and his team will once again visit Bhutan.
This time Zorro will have meetings with the Olympic Committee and Bhutan Paralympic Committee for Bhutan's participation in the upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympic/Paralympic Games, especially focusing on his support to Paralympic and Para-athletes.

Also he will discuss the possible participation of Bhutan in the next Winter Olympic/Paralympic Games and preparation for that.

As always, Zorro cannot operate for long time as he has many duties, but good operators in his team will do their best for world-wide contacts.
They look forward to seeing you on the air!

Callsigns for this operation are as follows:
A50BOC (BOC stands for Bhutan Olympic Committee)
A50BPC (BPC stands for Bhutan Paralympic Committee)
A5B - Bhutan Team callsign

Schedule: December 11-20th
Bands: All bands (160-6 meters). Modes: All modes (CW, SSB, FT4 and FT8).
Operators mentioned are: Zorro/JH1AJT, Franz/DJ9ZB, Adrian/KO8SCA,
Max/ON5UR and Champ/E21EIC.

QSL via JH1AJT: P.O. Box 8, Oiso, Naka-gun, KANAGAWA 255-0003, Japan.
An OQRS will be available at ClubLog after his return to Japan.
Support FGC - Foundation for Global Children: http://www.fgc.or.jp/english

WEEKEND EDITION: A brisk 26 at 530 this morning but no damn wind....Genius hides Morse code in song.....Listen to the new episode of ARRL Audio News on your iOS or Android podcast app, or online at http://www.blubrry.com/arrlaudionews/.....K1JEK XMAS PARTY REMINDER: THURSDAY DECEMBER 12 AT THE SALEM HRO STORE FOLLOWED BY LUNCH AT THE CHINESE RESTAURANT NEXT STORE....A few things you should not do online.....FBI warns us that smart tv's have cameras and some have facial recognition, scary huh?....

ARRL’s 12 Days of Deals Start on Monday!

‘Tis the season to save. Beginning Monday, December 9, ARRL will offer 12 days of deals. ARRL members and guest members who have opted in to receive special offers and publication announcements will receive an email 12 different days with a special online deal.

A new deal will be distributed each day, Monday, December 9 – Friday, December 13; Monday, December 16 – Friday, December 20; Monday, December 23, and concluding on Tuesday, December 24. Each deal is valid online. Unwrap a new ham radio deal every day through Christmas Eve!

Foundations of Amateur Radio

The SDR earthquake will change our hobby forever

In the early 1990's when I was a broadcaster I would come into the studio and prepare my show. That involved hours of preparation, but on the technology side it involved vinyl records, reel-to-reel tape on open spools, looped tape on cart, running edits and razorblades.
If you're not familiar, a running edit is where you're playing the tape at normal speed and you hit record at just the right moment to replace the content. Of course that also requires that the thing you're recording is synchronised.
Imagine yourself with four hands and three ears and you'll have a good idea. Razor blade edits required that you mark the tape where the audio started, chop the tape at that point and stick it to another piece of tape. The joy of having sticky tape, razorblades and audio tape strewn around the room and hoping that the tape didn't let go when you transferred the audio to a broadcast tape.

If you wanted to play a song at the right time, you had to start it by putting the needle on the record, spinning the platter until you heard the song, then stopping the platter, winding back half or three quarter turn from where the audio started, depending on the speed and torque of the turntable, and then when you hit play, you'd have about half a second until the music started.

At the beginning of the 1990's that was how it was done.

Then compact disc came in and we could cue up a song and hit the go button and get almost instant sound. You could change tracks at the turn of a dial. Vinyl records were phased out pretty quick.

In 1993 I switched radio station and instead of reel-to-reel we used DAT, or Digital Audio Tape. It had the advantage that there was no discernible loss of audio quality as you copied material, but there was no editing, since the bits on the tape needed to be aligned and you just couldn't do that with most of the available gear. The start-up delay was horrendous too, several seconds if I recall. A lifetime of dead air if you got it wrong.

You might be wondering why I'm going down memory lane like this?

The reason is that something changed, fundamentally, almost overnight.

In 1995 Microsoft launched Windows 95. It was in August and as the local computer show I organised a competition to give away a copy of Windows 95. I edited my competition stinger, a 15 second and a 30 second promotional audio segment, entirely on my computer. Using SoundEdit 16 on my Macintosh computer I could overly tracks, add voice-overs, move sound tracks around, add dozens of tracks, change the left and right channel independently, amplify or delete specific beats, all things that were completely impossible using the gear in a radio station at the time.

When I brought my stinger into the station managers office on my laptop computer, the earth shifted. Overnight everything changed. At that point radio stations around the globe started the race towards entirely being run from hard-disk. The digital revolution hit broadcast audio.

That's almost a quarter century ago, but that change cannot be overstated.

I think that in amateur radio we're looking at the same kind of change with the same level of impact.

Today you can go online and buy a NanoVNA for less than a hundred dollars. This device, a touch-screen driven tool, allows you to measure electrical circuits. For example, you might connect an antenna and measure the impedance of that antenna. If you connect a reference antenna to the second port, you can even measure radiation patterns.

Think about that for a moment.

You can measure a radiation pattern. That means that there is something that radiates.

Does that sound familiar?

Perhaps like a transmitter?

So this NanoVNA is essentially a transmitter and receiver in one box, currently runs up to 900 MHz, but the next version is already in the works and it's slated to manage 3.5 GHz, for the same amount of money.

So, a 3.5 GHz transceiver for less than a hundred bucks.

If you look at the internals of a NanoVNA, you'll notice that it's got much of the same bits as a software defined radio, because it is a software defined radio. Thanks to modern integration, at a component level it has significantly less complexity than the early 1980's microcomputers I grew up with like the Commodore Vic 20.

Yes, I know, it's not quite a radio. There's different filtering, different software, no audio input, or output for that matter, no Morse key, it doesn't do FT8 or some other fancy mode, but guess what, it's all software. The parts of this device aren't complicated, they're cheap, simple to program and I don't think it's going to take long before we see a new explosion of software defined transceivers that are begging to be used by radio amateurs around the globe.

We live in exciting times would be the understatement of the year.

I'm Onno VK6FLAB

Amateur Radio Newsline Report 2197 ---a rehash of the news


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: Our top story this week is the ongoing bushfire devastation in Australia. One vital team suffered a new challenge with its radio equipment - as we hear from Graham Kemp VK4BB.

GRAHAM: As bush fires continue to threaten parts of Australia, the Northern Tablelands team of the New South Wales Rural Fire Service suffered a serious setback:

Vandals struck a portable radio repeater trailer that firefighters and aircraft depend on for vital communication links. Radio equipment and numerous technical and mechanical components were stolen from inside the damaged trailer, which had been deployed southeast of Nymboida.

This has kept the trailer off line, placing fire crews in even more danger as they push back against the deadly blazes.
The Nymboida fires are some 400 miles north of Sydney, capital city of VK2.

As police continue their investigation into the vandalism and thefts, one woman in Newcastle announced on Facebook that she had combined her holiday party with a fundraiser to help with the losses. She reported on the 1st of December that she had raised nearly $1,200 at the event.


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: Amateur Radio Newsline proudly announces the winner of our newscast's first International Newsmaker of the Year Award - a group that has consistently shown leadership and commitment to the ham radio community. Here's Ed Durrant DD5LP with our deserving winner.

ED: What began 26 years ago in West Bengal, India as the result of one ham radio operator's commitment to community service and safety has blossomed into a powerhouse radio team of 285. The West Bengal Radio Club helps with critical communications during cyclones and earthquakes, reunites despairing families with missing members, transmits election results from rural polling places and teaches farmers who cannot afford lightning arresters to build their own life-saving devices. Each January they also serve as a safety net for the tens of thousands of Hindu pilgrims who travel to the Bay of Bengal and the River Ganges for the holy mela festival. Most recently they helped put a stop to signal jamming that was blocking deep-sea fishermen's access to essential broadcasts of cyclone warnings.

Remarkably, the club accomplishes most of this operating simplex. Ambarish (OMBARISH) Nag (NOG) Biswas VU2JFA said the club's most urgent need is for a repeater. They have no money, no budget and oftentimes members borrow equipment from the National Institute of Amateur Radio, a large nonprofit club in Hyderabad (HY-dra-Bod).

We called Ambarish Nag Biswas, the club's founder and secretary, to tell him the club is this year's International Newsmaker Award recipient and here's what he had to say:

AMBARISH NAG BISWAS: "We are all so very much happy to say that we will do from the land of Jagadish Chandra Bose, we promise to we will do something for mankind using our radio hobby. Thank you.


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: The popular "12 Days of Christmas" on-air event is back - and operators are getting ready. Jack Parker W8ISH gives us the details.

JACK: The Twelve Days of Christmas are once again going to bring 12 days of QSOs as last year's popular holiday event returns for its second year. Salli K2RYD and Lou NO2C (Enn Oh Two See) are preparing to go back on the air along with many of last year's operators from New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Oregon, Arizona and North Carolina.

Be listening for 12 days, starting on the 14th of December, for such call signs as W2P - for Partridges - and W2T for Turtle Doves. You will hear them on SSB, CW and satellite modes.

Then wait to unwrap your own holiday gift after January 1st, when a special certificate will be available for you to download. Organizers are proud of last year's total 12,200 contacts but hope to surpass that number this year.


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: A respected leader in the Arizona ham radio community has become a Silent Key. Mark Kesauer (KEZ-HOUR) N7KKQ died on Thanksgiving Day, November 28th, of brain cancer. Mark was perhaps best known among friends and fellow hams as an active volunteer with the Amateur Radio Council of Arizona, having held almost every board position as often as needed. In 2004 he served as the Council's chairman. He and his wife Chris N7PVL, who is the Council's treasurer, shared the Council's Ham of the Year award in 1999. Mark was also well known for doing what needed doing, whether it was to serve as an awards coordinator, announcer, coordinator of volunteers or working on WiFi and PA systems. He is also credited rebuilding the Council's first Prowler Trailer.


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: Another influential amateur -- and a leader at the ARRL has become a Silent Key. Paul Rinaldo W4RI died on November 29th. Paul had been a leading voice on the global stage in amateur radio and was responsible for establishing the ARRL's Technical Relations Office in 1992 near Washington, D.C. In 2004 he became the league's first Chief Technology Officer, a post he held until his retirement in 2008. For years he was a frequent face and voice at ITU conferences. He was also a board member of the United States ITU Association. The Virginia resident, who was first licensed in 1949, was 88.


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: When is the right age to become a ham? Ask the newcomers in this next report from Jim Meachen ZL2BHF.

JIM: Amateur radio is as ageless, it seems, as the rookie radio operators it attracts. A recent report in the Courier newspaper in Iowa notes that Jane Buck of Cedar Falls recently passed her General Class exam after three very earnest tries, and now shows off her call sign KE0RKO on her car's license plate. She was inspired and encouraged by her son Wayne KE0GTF. Jane Buck, rookie radio operator, is 78.

Meanwhile, in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, 9-year-old Ciandra Scarborough and 10-year-old Jhawanie Laidlow became the southern Caribbean nation's youngest candidates to pass the technician class test after completing a one-week series of free classes from the Rainbow Radio League and partly sponsored by the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission. They were among 13 license candidates in their class. Like Jane Buck, these amateur radio candidates also had their share of encouraging words throughout the process: Veteran hams stopped by during the one week of training to give moral support and cheer them on


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: December is the month for celebrating young operators on the air. While plans are under way for a Region 2 youth radio camp this summer, young hams are already tuning up this month, as Paul Braun WD9GCO tells us.

PAUL: The “Youth On The Air” organization is growing every year, and this year it’s even bigger. Newsline’s own Neil Rapp WB9VPG is organizing a Region 2 YOTA camp, and our 2018 Young Ham of the Year, Bryant Rascoll KG5HVO, is very much involved in this month’s event, as he explains:

RASCOLL: I am currently the YOTA Month coordinator for Region 2. Region 1 started the YOTA Month activity in 2013 and they’ve had a very successful program of encouraging youth to get on the radio, especially during the month of December which is commonly known as “Youngsters On The Air Month” or “Youth On The Air Month.”

This year, since the announcement of “Youth On The Air Region 2,” we thought we would join Region 1 as well as Region 3 and have a joint special-event operation that involves youth from all over the world. So the goal is mainly to get youth on the radio. “Youth” is defined as an operator under 25 years old.

PAUL: Rascoll explained that since we can’t use 4-letter suffixes here in the USA, they have four separate 1 by 1 calls, each with a letter that together spells out “YOTA.” You can find out more at the website, YOTAregion2 dot org - that’s with the numeral 2. We encourage everyone to try and work all of the stations involved in this month’s event.

All of us at Newsline would also like to congratulate Bryant on achieving the level of Eagle Scout, earning it with a service project that includes amateur radio.


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: Organizers of this year's Jamboree on the Air have released their report for participation in the United States. Bill Stearns NE4RD tells us more.

BILL: This week in radio scouting the 2019 U.S. Jamboree on the Air report is out! Based on the 201 station reports received following the event: 9,106 Scouts and 4,677 Visitors participated this year. The collective totals show a slight decrease in overall participation however based upon the lower number of reporting stations this is an increase in participation at event stations of 24% or 13 more participants per station.

The highlighted report comes from the WN7BSA station where they had 140 Cub Scouts and 85 Scouts. They operated two HF stations, three 2m stations and one 33cm station. Only a few contacts were made on 20 meters, but 40 meters was fairly active. VHF and UHF contacts through local repeaters made up the deficit but the real "star" was DSTAR through the KR7ST repeater in Sahuarita, AZ. See more of this report on the K2BSA website.

The IcomAmerica ID-51A Plus 2 HT prize was selected via RandomPicker.com and it goes to Robert Crow, KA8CDC, who was the control operator and reporter of the K2BSA/8 station. Congratulations Robert and thank you to IcomAmerica for supporting Scouting.

For more information on this and radio scouting, please visit our website at k2bsa.net.


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: From New Zealand comes another cautionary tale urging tower safety. Here's Jim Meachen ZL2BHF.

JIM: In the North King Country town of Otorohanga the collapse of a ham radio tower on the 1st of December left one person trapped, according to local media reports. Police and four fire engines responded to the scene, according to Fire and Emergency New Zealand. There were no further details about the collapse or the person involved but according to media accounts, by the time the emergency personnel arrived, the individual was free. Media reports said that a St. John's spokeswoman reported that they received a call for someone who needed treatment for moderate injuries.



STEPHEN/ANCHOR: There's good news for hams in the Philippines - it's a period of amnesty to let them register their equipment. John Williams VK4JJW has that story.

JOHN: The National Telecommunications Commission in the Philippines is giving hams with unregistered repeaters, mobile radios or portable radios and HF rigs a chance to register them until the 23rd of December without penalties or surcharges. A November memorandum from NTC officials offered guidelines for those wishing to come into compliance with mandatory national registration. Under this amnesty program the equipment can be registered at any NTC regional or district office or during any mobile-licensing activities. The equipment must be owned and operated by those holding a valid licence to do so.



STEPHEN/ANCHOR: Contesters in Spain just got a welcome approval from authorities about their call signs. Ed Durrant DD5LP has that development.

ED: Don't be surprised if you hear a ham from Spain calling QRZ and his call sign has a single-letter suffix. The Spanish Amateur Radio Union, or URE, recently secured approval for amateur radio operators to be granted call signs with a suffix containing a single letter. The announcement in late November on the URE website marks the successful conclusion of the radio union's five-year battle with the General Directorate of Telecommunications and Information Technologies and the Ministry of Economy and Business. Meanwhile, there is disappointing news from Switzerland where the national amateur radio society, the USKA, learned of Ofcom's rejection of its request for ham radio call signs for trainees. The Swiss proposal is modelled after a system in Germany that allows trainees to gain on-air operation experience under supervision of their mentor who holds the training licence.


STEPHEN/ANCHOR: There's a new name among the notables in the Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame. Jeremy Boot G4NJH has those details.

JEREMY: His years of contributions and hard work have earned Ed Frazer VE7EF a place in the Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame. The West Vancouver ham was appointed by Radio Amateurs of Canada's trustees for his long record of service to the amateur community. He cofounded the British Columbia Amateur Radio Coordination Council and has served it both as director and officer. He has also been RAC director for the British Columbia and Yukon region and chairman of the RAC's administration and finance committee. Ed also has been president of the UBC Amateur Radio Club and the North Shore Amateur Radio Club (NSARC).

Ed was also a former employee at British Columbia Telephone Company and former chairman of the Vancouver Chapter of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.

For eight years, he had chaired the Board of Trustees for the Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame -- the very entity where his name will now be listed among so many others.


Gerard, F2JD, will be on the air as HR5/F2JD in Honduras from December 12th through to April 4th. Listen for Gerard on 160-6 metre using CW, SSB and the Digital modes. Send paper QSLs direct to F6AJA or via the REF Bureau. Logs will be posted on the LNDX website.

Brad, VK2BY, will be active as HS0ZNR from Thiland between the 14th of December and the 8th of January. Listen for Brad on 80 through 10 metres using SSB and FT8. QSL to VK2BY. Brad will upload his log to Club-Log and LoTW.

Harald DF2WO is on the air from Burkina Faso through the 20th of December. Listen for him as XT2AW on all bands 160 – 6m. Send QSLs to M0OXO OQRS.

Members of the Hope Hill Contesters group are using the callsign TO9W from St. Martin in the Caribbean through the 13th of December. Send QSLs to W9ILY.

Matt IZ4YGS will be on the air from Ghana until the 28th of December. He is using the callsign 9G5GS on all bands 160 – 15m on FT8 and SSB. QSL to his home call.



STEPHEN/ANCHOR: If you're a DXer, the date of December 11th should have a special meaning for you. In our final story of the week, Mike Askins KE5CXP explains why.

MIKE: Happy 98th birthday to DX! No that's not someone's initials - you all know better than that - it's the long-distance communication so many of us can be found chasing late at night or in the early hours of the morning -- and even from mountaintops and lighthouses. It's been a feverish pursuit for so many radio amateurs especially since December 11th, 1921 when the first "Transatlantic tests" event was held, pushsing the limits of amateur frequencies. The idea was to see if low power stations could get their message across the ocean and into Europe.

Yes, it worked, didn't it? Radio Club of America station 1BCG in Greenwich, Connecticut made contact with Scotland. To mark 98 years of mostly good DX since then, the ARRL's station W1AW at the Newington, Connecticut headquarters will operate on December 11th from 1300 to 0000 hours UTC. Teams of volunteer operators will help commemorate the milestone while underscoring how radio can connect us, wave by wave, in the United States and Europe. Operating frequencies will be posted on the message board and on web-based SDR at k3fef dot com colon 8901 (k3fef.com:8901)

Be listening on that day for two other initials: CQ, CQ.

FRIDAY EDITION: K1JEK XMAS PARTY REMINDER: THURSDAY DECEMBER 12 AT THE SALEM HRO STORE FOLLOWED BY LUNCH AT THE CHINESE RESTAURANT NEXT STORE......TODAY'S DUMBASS.....Looks like a cold weekend here in New England, a touch of snow this afternoon, conditions have been pretty good on 10-20 meters as of late.....I bet this guy was a ham....Make ham radio great again, don't belong to cult ham radio groups, you know what I am talking about!.....BC fired the football coach before the bowl season even began, of course being invited to the "Toilet Bowl" consolation game is nothing to brag about!.....Looks like fun, catch as many snakes as you can competition....3928 is very active from 330 to 5pm  every day if you want to join in on 75 meters in the New England area- fun, no membership numbers, no excessive id'ing, no big ego's welcome....Nice bunch of hams on 3843 most nights from the mid-west to southern states for easy listening...Enjoy the Florida Keys while you can, it's going under water and too expensive to save...Giving up on serving decent meals, New Zealand airlines now serving edible coffee cups....

Mud Duck from the Cape Cod Canal pulled his boat out for the season but has not stopped fishing ....talk about obsessive!

Maine makes waves - again

Waldo County Emergency Management Agency Becomes the First to Deploy a New Wide-Area, Emergency, Public-Information Radio Service

It’s not the first time a communication innovation has come out of the State of Maine. In 1868, Mainer Joseph Stearns came up with a way to carry on two ends of a conversation simultaneously on the same wire, revolutionizing the telegraph industry; and later what would become the "telephone" industry.

In that spirit, one Maine county, with the assistance of seasoned amateur radio operators, is implementing the Nation’s first county-wide emergency broadcast system, utilizing universally available AM radio channels.
The new wide-area “RadioSAFE” system will be utilized in emergency / disaster situations in which citizens are cut off from power and communications – something that could easily have happened had Hurricane Dorian steered a slightly different course in September.

Explains Waldo County emergency management director Dale Rowley,
“We realized that the last option [in emergencies] most people have for getting information is by broadcast radio.” It was December 2013 when the County experienced a massive ice storm that crippled the power grid for a full week. Rowley recounts: “We established an emergency shelter but could not get the word to residents that the shelter was open! They couldn’t watch TV; and their smart-phone batteries were dead. We realized that the last option that most people have for getting information is by broadcast radio through their car radio or with small battery-operated receiver. Then we found out about emergency radio advisory stations.”

Though a power outage is the number-one situation in which the county will utilize the service, emergency management officials say it also could be of critical assistance in large-scale evacuations due to forest fires, HAZMAT spills or other hazards that would endanger the public.

Waldo County will be erecting road signs and will be using all local media to promote the presence of the emergency service. “During an emergency, we will send out a WEA (Wireless Emergency Alert) to cell phones directing people to tune to the AM station for more detailed information." adds Rowley.

Recognizing that an emergency AM radio system capable of covering their entire county was not an off-the-shelf item, in 2018 Waldo County reached out to equipment suppliers to propose the parameters of such a service. That request resulted in the design (by Information Station Specialists) of a high performance radio antenna with the efficiency and power-handling capability to cover a radius of more than 20 miles – what is required to cover the county.

Condensed versions of the RadioSAFE system are also available with 6-10-mile and 3-5-mile signal coverage distances. Depending on the version, a waiver and/or a Special Temporary Authority (STA) may be required from the Federal Communications Commission for operation.

The County then obtained a Subrecepient State Homeland Security Grant to cover costs. Information Station Specialists designed RadioSAFE wide-area emergency broadcast systems as a direct result of the County’s expressed needs. The RadioSAFE system Waldo County selected is under construction at this time on a hilltop tower site, centrally located near the Town of Knox, Maine. Adjacent Lincoln County (also in Maine) is proceeding with engineering work on a similar system for their jurisdiction.

Amateur radio pros Brit Rothrock (Communications) and Robert Hoey (GIS) within the Waldo County Emergency Management Agency are doing the system planning and will be installing the new service at the County's Aborn Hill tower site. The County's RadioSAFE System will operate on AM Frequency 530 kHz, a channel designated exclusively for TIS (Travelers’ Information Station) service in the United States. There are no other broadcast stations on 530 kHz in the Nation now, making it an ideal channel for emergency use.

Because frequencies for RadioSAFE operation are not universally available, planning a system begins with a frequency search to determine availability.

Visit Waldo County’s EMA website at www.waldocountume.gov/ema.
To learn more about RadioSAFE systems, visit www.theRADIOsource.com/products/radiosafe.htm.

TF3YOTA active in December

Iceland's national amateur radio society, the IRA, report the special event call sign TF3YOTA will be on the air for YOTA month

A translation of their post reads:

Call signs with the YOTA (Youngsters On The Air) extension have already begun to be heard on tap, beginning in December.

"We will only be running later now than last year ," Elín said in a conversation with the reporter, "but we will start on full December 17" .
Then Elín Sigurðardóttir, TF2EQ and Árni Freyr Rúnarsson, TF8RN, will start and activate the call sign TF3YOTA. Their idea is also to invite young people to the site and give them the opportunity to get acquainted with the hobby and communication.

Elín Sigurðardóttir TF2EQ and Árni Freyr Rúnarsson TF8RN image credit Jónas Bjarnason TF3JB

The YOTA project began last year (2018) and will be operational in December each year. It is designed to increase young people's interest in amateur radio. The project is under the auspices of IARU Area 1 and all national amateur radio amateurs in the Region are involved (as well as national members of Regions 2 and 3).

Elín Sigurðardóttir, TF2EQ, the Youth Representative of the IRA, is also the IRA YOTA Project Manager together with Árni Frey Rúnarsson, TF8RN.

Mathias Hagvaag, TF3MH, IRA QSL manager handles QSL issues as before.

Source IRA https://tinyurl.com/IcelandIRA

Ham radio to encourage student interest in science

The News Minute reports the Open Space Foundation uses Amateur Radio to encourage young people to take an interest in science

The News Minute says:

Open Space Foundation was started in 2013 by Surender Ponnalagar (23), Bharath Kumar VU3BRE (21), Dinesh Kumar (19) and Anupama Pradeepan (23) - all of whom met at various science events. While Anupama is currently employed, the other three are doing their Masters'.

“Our idea is to take science to rural students. There are many opportunities for students to explore science, but most are unaware of these. We ourselves got to know about it only later. The idea of OSF is to develop science hobbies in children,” he explains.

Initially, the four would travel to different schools with simple science equipment like telescope, microscope etc to conduct one-day science forums. A couple of years later, they realised that this method was not helping their mission. That's when they came up with Open Science Centres (OSC) in schools.

The first OSC was set up at Municipal Middle School in Tiruppur. “We make it a point to meet students two to three times every week, during non-working days. We have selected 30 students based on interest, with help from teachers, to be trained in OSC,” he adds.

And the very first idea that they introduced to students was the ham radio, also known as the amateur radio.

Any student who has completed 12 years of age is eligible to obtain the ham radio licence from the government. “There is an easy exam that anyone with basic electrical knowledge can pass. The ham radio is the best way to learn and discuss science. You can communicate with anyone across the world, share your recent science experiments. It is a very good hobby,” he says, the excitement evident in his voice.

Read the full story at

FCC Amending Amateur Radio RF Exposure Safety Rules

The FCC is amending its Part 97 Amateur Service rules relating to RF exposure safety. In a lengthy document in ET Docket 19-226 released on December 4 that addresses a broad range of RF safety issues, the FCC said current amateur radio RF exposure safety limits will remain unchanged, but that the amateur-specific exemption from having to conduct an RF exposure evaluation will be replaced by the FCC’s general exemption criteria. Radio amateurs have always had to comply with RF exposure limits, but certain stations have been exempt from having to conduct evaluations based only upon power and frequency. The Commission indicated that by and large, if an RF source was “categorically excluded” from routine evaluation under the old rules, it will most likely still be exempt under the new rules, which are expected to take effect in the next couple of months.

“For applicants and licensees in the Amateur Radio Service, we substitute our general exemption criteria for the specific exemption from routine evaluation based on power alone in Section 97.13(c)(1) and specify the use of occupational/controlled limits for amateurs where appropriate,” the FCC said.

“The sky is not falling here,” ARRL Lab Manager Ed Hare, W1RFI, commented. “The major aspects of the rules will not impose major new burdens on the Amateur Radio Service. As in all regulatory matters, though, the devil may be in the details, so the ARRL technical staff, legal staff, and the experts on the ARRL RF Safety Committee are carefully evaluating this FCC document.”

Under the revised Section 97.13(c)(1), “In lieu of evaluation with the general population/uncontrolled exposure limits, amateur licensees may evaluate their operation with respect to members of his or her immediate household using the occupational/controlled exposure limits in Section 1.1310, provided appropriate training and information has been accessed by the amateur licensee and members of his/her household,” the amended rule says.

“RF exposure of other nearby persons who are not members of the amateur licensee’s household must be evaluated with respect to the general population/uncontrolled exposure limits. Appropriate methodologies and guidance for evaluating Amateur Radio Service operation is described in the Office of Engineering and Technology (OET) Bulletin 65, Supplement B,” the revised rule concludes.

The FCC said it was not persuaded by ARRL’s argument in its comments that the routine evaluation exemption for amateur radio stations operating below a certain power threshold should be maintained. “Amateur radio licensees operate a variety of installations of different size, power, and frequency, which can be located in close proximity to people, giving rise to various RF exposure concerns,” the FCC noted.

In a meeting with FCC OET Chief Julius Knapp and senior staff in early November, ARRL asked the FCC to make available on the internet a calculator to facilitate making the correct calculations the rules require. ARRL said that would be preferable to unofficial third-party calculators, the results from which might not be accorded the same degree of deference in local disputes. Several software programs were suggested as models.

The FCC did not single out amateur radio in drafting its latest RF exposure rules. The rules affect multiple services, and exemptions for many other services were also deleted as part of a broader policy driven by a proliferation of RF devices, some resulting in situations where gain antennas are sited much closer to people than was expected in 1996 when the rules were last revised.

Dayton Hamvention Admission, Fees to Increase in 2020

Dayton Hamvention® is increasing the cost of admission and its booth fees. Hamvention General Chair Jack Gerbs, WB8SCT, announced this week that general admission would rise by $4 per ticket to $26 in advance or $31 at the gate for all 3 days. The cost of flea market spots will go up by $5 per space, and inside exhibitors will pay $30 more.

“Hamvention has always strived to produce a very high-quality event for amateur radio enthusiasts from around the globe,” Gerbs said. “We have always felt it is imperative that we give back to amateur radio at many levels. We have been very generous in our support over the years.” Gerbs cited “the economic pressures to present a show like Hamvention” as the reason for the price increases.

“The Hamvention Executive Team is asking for your support and understanding as we move forward together,” he said.

FT4 and JS8 added to the RFzero

A new version of the RFzero library: http://www.rfzero.net/ has been released that among other things include FT4 and JS8 encoding. Thus the RFzero is now able to transmit PC-less FT4 free text or hex messages and JS8 heartbeat message from kHz to GHz.

The RFzero is a multi-purpose GPS controlled RF unit. It can be used as a beacon (IBP, SPB, CW, FT4, FT8, JS8, JT9, PI4, WSPR, …), signal generator, VFO, QO-100 dual LO, low cost GPSDO, e.g. for 10 MHz, or … Furthermore, is the RFzero an Arduino compatible platform. So it is possible for you to write or modify the software yourself. More than 20 programs, Arduino sketches, are integrated into the Arduino IDE for easy upload to the RFzero.

THURSDAY EDITION: Old Santa is arriving by boat this Saturday followed by the town Xmas tree lighting, singing of carols, Christmas Concert at the music theatre, shops all open for shopping and serving some Xmas cheer....even I am getting the Xmas spirit!....Real-life Clark Griswold Christmas display with 30K lights destroyed by truck.........I started to watch Man vs. Bear last night, until I realized it was one of the most worthless shows ever produced....Cockfighting, I can't believe it still exists....Today's Asshat Award goes to this guy...Lot's of activity on 10-20 meters during the daytime, give it a whirl and have some fun! And remember that ham radio is a hobby, it's supposed to be fun!.....

Exclusive ham radio club seeks new members

Licensed amateur radio operators who belong to American Mensa or any other national Mensa organization have a club to call their own:

It's the Mensa Ham Radio Special Interest Group, or HAMSIG.

It's believed that perhaps as many as 30,000 hams in the United States alone would qualify for Mensa membership, meaning they test at or above the 98th percentile on any number of approved intelligence tests.

Mensa is said to be waiving its customary exam fee through December 31 for applicants who use the voucher code BigSky19 - and the code can be used at https://www.us.mensa.org/join/

Oldest Known US Ham Receives ARRL Centurion Award

The oldest known US radio amateur, Cliff Kayhart, W4KKP, received his ARRL Centurion Award plaque in November. The award recognizes hams who have achieved centenarian status. Kayhart, who lives in White Rock, South Carolina, is 108. The ARRL Board of Directors conferred the award on Kayhart at its July 2019 meeting.

At the November meeting of the Dutch Fork Amateur Radio Group in Little Mountain, South Carolina, ARRL Roanoke Division Director Bud Hippisley, W2RU, headed an ARRL delegation that presented the Centurion Award plaque to Kayhart, who was first licensed as W2LFE in 1937 (he’s also held W9GNQ). With Hippisley were Roanoke Division Vice Director Bill Morine, N2COP, and South Carolina Section Manager Marc Tarplee, N4UFP.

Kayhart served on Iwo Jima during World War II, shortly after the US victory there, setting up long-range radio communication from the island to Tokyo to arrange for the eventual surrender by Japan.

Kayhart remains active, checking into several nets from his assisted living facility. Centurion Award recipients have their annual ARRL membership fees waived while continuing to receive QST and other ARRL member benefits. Kayhart was profiled in the June 2018 issue of QST.    

The last Morse code maritime radio station in North America | Bartell's Backroads

1999 marked the last time a commercial Morse code message was supposedly transmitted to ships at sea, but if you head to Point Reyes, Morse code is alive and well.
MARIN COUNTY, Calif. — Video killed the radio star and satellites killed commercial Morse code messaging. The year 1999 marked the end of an era, it was the last time a commercial morse code message was supposedly transmitted to ships at sea. 

However, if you travel to Point Reyes, Morse code signal is alive and well at KPH Maritime Radio Station. It is the last Morse code maritime radio station in the world.

Richard Dillman is President of the Maritime Radio Historical Society and he runs the KPH Radio station which is located inside Point Reyes National Park.    ARTICLE

Ham for the Holidays: Amateur Radio Operators, Then and Now

The Los Altos History Museum serves up “Ham for the Holidays: Amateur Radio Operators, Then and Now,” a historical perspective on how radio hobbyists help keep neighborhoods safe during disasters, in an exhibit appearing in the J. Gilbert Smith House through January 5, 2020.
They say: Tis the season for giving thanks, and around the holidays we are especially grateful for our local amateur radio operators. Known as “hams,” these volunteers help keep our community safe throughout the year at regular public events and during times of crisis. In this exhibit, learn more about the history of hams and how a fun hobby can also keep our neighborhoods prepared and resilient.

The exhibit is free to the public, and open Thursday-Sundays, noon-4pm


A planetary wave is supercharging noctilucent clouds over Antarctica

An atmospheric wave almost half the size of Earth is supercharging noctilucent clouds above Antarctica, according to new data from NASA's AIM spacecraft.

A rare sighting in New Zealand just a few nights ago highlights how bright the clouds have become as a growing mass of frosted meteor smoke pinwheels around the South Pole.

Visit today's edition of Spaceweather.com for the full story.

WEDNESDAY WINTER WONDERLAND ISSUE: Winter Wonderland bull shit, snow is a pain in my ass. It's like burning wood, you move it 5 times before you need it, its a mess, heavy, and buggy.  If you cut it from log length to 16" length and then split it, and stack it, that's even worse, another few pieces of gas equipment to maintain and store. I had 4 tons of BioBricks delivered and loaded into the basement on  pallets. I go down once  day and lug up one neatly packed 40 pound bundle and that's it for the day. Only thing easier than that is a pellet stove but I like the look and feel of the Vermont Casting stove and it's quiet, no damn blower, no power needed if electricity gets knocked out, no breaking it down and cleaning it (well I empty the ash tray once a week)...I guess I am getting old and looking for "easy" in my life. Back to snow, pain in the ass. I have to go out today and knock the snow off the shrubbery which is extensive in the yard...I need to get to Florida and it's only early December....on  brighter note: December 12th reminder: K1JEK hosting the Annual XMAS Party in Salem, NH at HRO Headquarters starting at 11am All are welcome. Guest Speaker is tentatively Warren- WS1D who will be talking about his early career testing football helmets, backup speaker is "Mud Duck" Bob speaking of life on the Cape Cod Canal and the complexities of running high power on 75 meters on his boat maritime mobile.....

1912, Warren got 25 cents for each helmet he could find defective....when men were men....

US State Department Seeks Foreign Service Information Management Technical Specialists – Radio

The US Department of State is currently accepting applications for Foreign Service Information Management Technical Specialists – Radio (IMTS-R) positions. Foreign Service IMTS-Rs design, install, and maintain radio and telecommunications systems. They provide radio support for presidential, congressional, and other VIP visits. These radio specialists work from a regional location, overseas or domestically. Extensive travel is required to support radio telecommunications systems, such as land mobile radio (LMR), HF, VHF, and UHF radio networks at State Department missions around the world. Potential applicants should read the vacancy announcement to ensure that they meet all of the requirements before applying.

To begin the online application process, visit USAJOBS. The deadline to submit completed applications is December 31, 2019. Applicants must be US citizens, at least 20 years old to apply, and at least 21 years old to be appointed. Applicants must also be available for worldwide service and be able to obtain all required security, medical, and suitability clearances.

Boy Scouts Report Increased JOTA 2019 Station Participation

The Boy Scouts of America report that, although overall JOTA 2019 participation was down slightly from 2018, “our calculations show that each station averaged an additional 13 people in attendance over 2019. This shows an aggregate increase of 24% attendance per station, even with our reported stations being down from 266 in 2018 to 201 in 2019."

The Scouts reported that 13,783 individuals took part in JOTA 2019, down from 14,708 in 2018. 

Latest Icom SDR amateur radios supplied to RSGB National Radio Centre

If you have recently visited the Radio Society of Great Britain’s National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park you will have noticed two new radio additions. Icom has provided the IC-7300 SDR Transceiver and IC-9700 SDR Transceiver to the centre to allow it to promote amateur radio with the latest cutting edge Icom radio technology.

The National Radio Centre (NRC)  which opened in 2012 has a primary goal to promote amateur radio as an integrated technical hobby and encourage people to become radio amateurs. Its other remit is to help increase awareness of the hobby so that (for example) neighbours might be more informed when a planning application or EMC issue arises. On a broader level, the centre plans to demonstrate that amateur radio can be part of a wider STEM application and that a career in engineering (particularly radio communication engineering) is very worthwhile.

The NRC has been immensely successful. In 2017 it welcomed 23,000 visitors and this increased in 2018 to more than 55,000 visitors. Year to date in 2019 (end of September) the centre has introduced just over 80,000 visitors to see amateur radio in action.

Icom UK has supplied two of its latest SDR radios to the centre in addition to the GB7BP D-STAR repeater that is situated onsite.  The IC-7300 HF/50/70MHz SDR Transceiver  is being used (with TX disabled) for visitors to tune around the amateur bands, giving practical hands-on experience of using a high-grade modern SDR transceiver.  The IC-9700  is the NRC’s flagship VHF/UHF transceiver for 2m / 70cm operation, running CW / SSB / FM simplex and D-STAR digital Amateur radio.

The main benefits of having the latest Icom SDR radios at the centre:
• Ease of use and small physical footprint – nicely accommodated on the radio bench
• Huge range of bands available in just two radios (IC-7300 / IC-9700)
• Ability to demonstrate/run several radios simultaneously when the radio room is busy with different groups of visitors
• The opportunity to run D-STAR repeater QSOs, which previously the NRC was unable to demonstrate to visitors

The addition of these radios also allows the RSGB, through the NRC, to demonstrate many exciting aspects of amateur radio to its visitors and inspire:
• Existing amateurs to try new aspects of the hobby
• Amateurs whose license has lapsed to get active again and back on the bands
• People into the technical hobby by using some of the latest technology available commercially on the amateur market

Martyn Baker (G0GMB), RSGB National Radio Centre Coordinator, said, ‘Both the RSGB, and in particular the NRC, are most appreciative of both the IC-7300 & IC-9700, as, without them, it would be much harder to inspire visitors and potentially recruit new interest in amateur radio.’

To find out more about the National Radio Centre visit  www.rsgb.org/nrc .
If you are a member of the RSGB, don’t forget you can get free entry to Bletchley Park and the NRC by downloading a voucher at:  www.rsgb.org/bpvoucher .

Impact of VDSL interference on the Amateur Radio Service

In November Ofcom published the result of technical surveys on the effects of electromagnetic emissions from Openreach cables carrying VDSL services but their conclusion seemed markedly different from the RSGB's

The RSGB report - Determination of impact of VDSL interference on the Amateur Radio Service - is available for download at

The accompanying presentation slides are at

What needs to be done by BT Openreach to reduce RF Interference?
The RSGB say:
• Improve Line Balance where necessary – we have a mechanism in place to request line balance on nearby lines via the EMC Committee but this improves <10% cases
• Clean-up self-installs - difficult for a neighbouring property but Openreach should fit NTE5C with Mk4 faceplate which also improves broadband speeds and increases immunity
• Remove upstream band interference by universally notching 10.1 to 10.15MHz with guard-bands and by increasing the D1 to U1 guard-band to always protect 3.7 to 3.8MHz emergency frequencies
• Selectively notch amateur bands in downstream (particularly 14MHz band) at affected premises
• Reroute the overhead cables so they are further from the amateurs’ antennas when necessary
• Provide FTTP instead of FTTC at problem locations

Rare stratospheric clouds sighted in the Arctic

Around the Arctic Circle, sky watchers are reporting rare clouds nearly as colorful as the Northern Lights.

Floating through the stratosphere, where clouds do not belong, their icy forms are visible even after sunset. These clouds can only form when the Arctic stratosphere is exceedingly cold.

Visit Spaceweather.com for photos and more information

HAM radios aren’t just a thing of the past...or cheap

BUCKHANNON — A couple of local people are seeking to spread awareness and help promote telecommunication by use of HAM radios. Buckhannon residents Fred and Stacy Suder both have licenses to operate the amateur radios and want to help others utilize this amazing method of communicating.

Long before the internet and cell services, the study of electromagnetic fields and radio communication dates back to the 1870s, which was 50 years after Samuel F.B. Morse invented the Morse code, around 1832. The HAM Radio or, “Amateur Radio,” is a complex radio that can be traced back over 100 years. Many still use it today, but people must be licensed to operate radio bands. 

According to the National Association for Amateur Radio, James Clerk Maxwell, a main pioneer of amateur radio, presented a theory about electromagnetic fields in 1873 that would eventually lead others to experiment with radio devices, which included high power and antennas. The Radio Act of 1912 required amateurs to be licensed and restricted them to the single wavelength of 200 meters. Two years later, Hiram Percy Maxim founded the American Radio Relay League and noticed that if more relay stations were organized, communication would be more reliable over longer distances. Soon, tests were being made with transmission and receiving over the Transatlantic beginning in 1921. Eventually, the first two-way contact would be made via the Moon by July 1960 on 1296 MHz. 

Mr. Suder mentioned, “HAM radio operators were some of the first to operate and transmit with even creating their own call letters at the time it was being invented.” He continued to explain how different radio bands respond separately. “For example, on 160 meters which is near the am broadcast band, at night you can talk to folks in Florida. That’s why WBUC isn’t on the air at night. If they were on the air at night on the am, you’d hear them in Florida. And that’s why they operate during daytime only,” Suder mentioned. 

“You don’t see too many HAM radios nowadays. It used to be more popular in the ‘60s. For me, it’s been a hobby for all my life, but once you understand the importance of amateur radios or when you study to get a license, it comes in handy when all else fails. Many of these units are used for emergency situations and the military still uses them,” Suder stated. “Most of my family are licensed to operate amateur radios. My main goal is to get the word out and it would be nice to have a county club. Some of the counties in our state have clubs like Doddridge, Monongalia, Logan, Raleigh, Kanawha and a lot more; WVU even has a club for amateur radios. The range of telecommunication with these radios are so powerful and distant, you can speak to people from just in your town or someone directly in another country on the other side of the Earth. They’re so strong that they even reach to outer space,” Suder said.      

“My main goal is to stress the opportunity for young folk to get them involved in something that you don’t see too frequently anymore. It’s a great hobby and service to pick up on, and introduces people to the electronics and telecommunication that are unlike the communication we mostly use today with cell phones and the internet,” Suder emphasized. “People may get involved for different reasons, but have a basic knowledge of radio technology and operation principles. You must pass an examination for an FCC license to be qualified to operate on radio bands. They call them ‘Amateur Bands’ that have been assigned by the FCC (or Federal Communications Commission). You used to have to learn Morse Code too, in order to pass the examination years ago,” he stated. “A good buddy of mine and I was inspired as teenagers to obtain our license and then eventually acquiring the top license. My first Call letters were K8WYH,” Suder proudly expressed.

Fred and Stacy Suder currently have a “Go Fund Me” fundraiser on Facebook, in order to help young people purchase online courses for Amateur Radio. “It teaches the youth about emergency communications and gives them an opportunity for advanced learning. Anyone can obtain a license. There are kids under the age of 10 learning to operate HAM radios,” Suder further stated. You can contact Fred and Stacy through Facebook @Fred Stacy Suder or by email at fredstacysuder1@yahoo.com to contribute to their cause or for more information about Amateur Radio licensing.

TUESDAY EDITION: Gale winds blew all night and I have only 2 inches of snow but it is supposed to snow until early afternoon. Looking at 5-6 inches of white stuff....December 12th reminder: K1JEK hosting the Annual XMAS Party in Salem, NH at HRO Headquarters starting at 11am All are welcome, even FT8 ops........

ISS SSTV December 4-6

Russian cosmonauts are expected to activate Slow Scan Television (SSTV) image transmissions on 145.800 MHz FM from the International Space Station on Wednesday to Friday, December 4, 5 and 6.

This is the schedule for the planned activation of the MAI-75 SSTV activity from the ISS.
• Dec 4: On – 12:00 GMT, Off – 16:50 GMT
• Dec 5: On – 11:25 GMT, Off – 17:15 GMT
• Dec 6: On – 10:20 GMT, Off – 16:40 GMT

Transmissions will be sent on 145.800 MHz FM (5 kHz deviation) in the SSTV mode PD-120. Once received, images can be posted and viewed by the public at http://www.spaceflight

ISS SSTV uses a Kenwood TM D710E transceiver which is part of the amateur radio station located in the Russian ISS Service Module.

Please note that SSTV events are dependent on other activities, schedules and crew responsibilities on the ISS and subject to change at any time. You can check for updates regarding planned operation at:
ISS Ham https://twitter.com/RF2Space
ARISS Status https://twitter.com/ARISS_status
ARISS SSTV Blog https://ariss-sstv.blogspot.com/
AMSAT Bulletin Board http://www.amsat.org/mailman/listinfo/amsat-bb

Read the MagPi article Pictures from space via ham radio

ISS SSTV info and links https://amsat-uk.org/beginners/iss-sstv/

SKYWARN Recognition Day Participation Webinar Set for December 4

A webinar will held on Wednesday, December 4, at 8:30 PM EST (December 5 at 0130 UTC) for those interested in participating in SKYWARN Recognition Day (SRD), which marks its 20th anniversary this year. On Saturday, December 7, 0000 to 2400 UTC, radio amateurs will be on the air from National Weather Service (NWS) forecast offices across the country, celebrating the long relationship between the amateur radio community and the NWS SKYWARN program. Traditionally, radio amateurs have assisted the mission of the NWS through providing near real-time reports of severe weather and storm development, which have proven invaluable to NWS forecasters.

During SRD, participants exchange contact information with as many NWS stations as possible on 80, 40, 20, 15, 10, 6, and 2 meters, plus 70 centimeters. Stations exchange call signs, signal reports, and locations, plus a quick description of the weather at your location (e.g., sunny, partly cloudy, windy, rainy, etc.). WX4NHC at the National Hurricane Center will also be on the air for SRD, 1300 – 1700 UTC. Developed in 1999, SRD is cosponsored by ARRL and the NWS.

To learn more, visit the SKYWARN Recognition Day website.

YOTA Month Expanding into the Americas

December is Youth on the Air (YOTA) Month, when stations operated by young radio amateurs around the world will get on the air to celebrate youth in amateur radio. YOTA Month began a few years ago in International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) Region 1, and the concept has now taken root in the Americas as YOTA Month in the Americas.

During YOTA Month, radio amateurs aged 25 and younger will be on the air as special event stations during December on various bands and modes. In the US, look for K8Y, K8O, K8T, and K8A. Elsewhere in the Americas, VE7YOTA will be on the air from Canada. XR2YOTA in Chile has been added to the list of youth stations in the Americas for YOTA Month. Young hams in other countries may also join in. Listen for other YOTA Month stations with “YOTA” suffixes.

For more information about YOTA in the Americas, contact YOTA Month in the Americas Coordinator Bryant Rascoll, KG5HVO, or YOTA in the Americas Camp Director Neil Rapp, WB9VPG.

Participants earn certificates by working the various YOTA-suffix stations on the air throughout December. Not a contest, the event is aimed at getting as many youngsters on air from as many countries as possible. The event takes place from 0000 UTC on December 1 until 2359 UTC on December 31.


Past ARRL Chief Technology Officer Paul Rinaldo, W4RI (SK)

A titan of Amateur Radio, past ARRL Chief Technology Officer Paul L. Rinaldo, W4RI, of Burke, Virginia, died on November 29 after a period of failing health. An ARRL Life Member, Rinaldo was 88.

"This is really sad news," ARRL President Rick Roderick, K5UR, remarked upon learning of Rinaldo's passing. "I worked with Paul on a number of things, and he amazed me with his knowledge and the different ways to consider issues. Smart. Highly respected. He sure helped us through the years in so many ways."

First licensed in 1949 as W9IZA (he also held W3FFH and K4YKB over the years), Rinaldo's focus was always in the arena of technical experimentation. He studied radio engineering at Valparaiso Technical Institute in Indiana.

Rinaldo was a cofounder and served as president of the Amateur Radio Research and Development Corporation (AMRAD). His first association with ARRL was an article, "Amateur Radio in the Computer Age," for the September 1979 edition of QST. Subsequently, he served in volunteer roles, among them as the first editor of QEX: The ARRL Experimenters' Exchange.

In 1983, Rinaldo succeeded Doug DeMaw, W1FB, as ARRL Technical Department Manager and Senior Technical Editor. His efforts led to his appointment as Publications Manager and, 5 years later, as Manager of Technical Development with responsibility for preparing for the 1992 World Administrative Radio Conference. This led to Rinaldo's supporting role in the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU), and he attended IARU Administrative Council (AC) meetings from 1996 to 2008, serving on several occasions as recording secretary.

"Paul's presence at the AC meetings was never simply clerical and was primarily to allow the AC to tap his unique expertise," IARU Secretary David Sumner, K1ZZ, noted. Rinaldo also took part in several International Telecommunication Union (ITU) conferences and served on numerous working parties and task groups. Sumner said amateur radio's successes at the just-ended WRC-19 were, in large part, because of Rinaldo's good work over the years.

In 1992, Rinaldo established ARRL's Technical Relations Office in the Washington, DC, area, which expanded as preparations for World Radiocommunication Conferences became an ongoing need. In 2004, the ARRL Board of Directors elected Rinaldo as ARRL's first Chief Technology Officer, a post he held until his retirement in 2008.

"For the past 16 years, Paul has been the face and voice of amateur radio in the technical circles of the federal government and one of our most visible representatives at the ITU," Sumner said at the time.

"We all had enormous respect for Paul and what he brought to IARU,"

IARU Region 1 President Don Beattie, G3BJ, commented. "People with his breadth of knowledge and experience, and the ability to apply it in a sensitive way, are all too rare."

Rinaldo was a board member of the United States ITU Association and a Life Senior Member of the IEEE. He also served on the IEEE-USA Committee on Communications Policy.

MONDAY EDITION: Three day storm now in day two this morning, howling winds gusting 45mph+ and rain, we escaped the snow. Tonight into tomorrow we are supposed to not be so lucky and get 5-8 inches of the white shit.....I see the ARRL has their hands out looking for money again, articles below.....We got the Xmas tree up and lit, remember when you were a kid and it was your job to keep the tree lit...important job when the bulbs were wired in series! Of course today, little Sparky would not be allowed to do such a dangerous and stressful job. I am so glad to have grown up as a kid in the 50-60's, good times, good music, ham radio was fun, .....I didn't have to drink water out of plastic bottles, I could use the bubbler, no mandated Obama's lunch program, didn't have play dates,  my mother home every day when we got home from school with something baking in the oven, only one phone and tv in the house, always had dinner as a family at 6pm sharp, didn't have take out food, we all had part time jobs as kids and chores around the house, life was a shit load easier then and we didn't need to have an officer assigned to the school all day to protect us or a full time shrink in the guidance office so Sparky and Princess could cope with life's injustices.

Support ARRL when you shop AmazonSmile on Cyber Monday

Planning to shop on Amazon this Cyber Monday? If so, remember to shop smile.amazon.com, and Amazon will make a contribution to ARRL. This helps the League to extend its reach in public service, advocacy, education, technology, and membership. Support ARRL as you shop your holiday gifts, decorations, and more. You shop. Amazon gives. Bookmark ARRL’s link and support Amateur Radio and ARRL every time you shop online this holiday season.

ARRL is Participating in “#Giving Tuesday” on December 3

ARRL is taking part in #GivingTuesday on December 3. This global day of giving invites individuals to celebrate the holiday season by giving back and creating change in their communities and their world. Many of ARRL’s programs and services are not covered by membership fees alone. Your contributions to the Education & Technology Fund, the Spectrum Defense Fund, and the Legislative Issues Advocacy Fund have a tremendous impact on ARRL’s ability to promote amateur radio and better serve members.

On #GivingTuesday (December 3) only, donate $75 or more and we’ll send you a free 2020 ARRL calendar, featuring ham radio projects by our members. Join the #GivingTuesday movement and make your gift now. Type “Giving Tuesday” in the “Additional Comments” box to receive your free calendar.

Thank you for supporting ARRL!

Radio hams take part in Day of Science 2019

On Sunday, November 24 radio amateurs from across Flanders in Belgium took part in the Day of Science 2019. Some made good use of the RSGB video - Amateur Radio a hobby for the 21st century

A translation of a UBA post reads:

The Flemish government organizes Science Day every year. This year amateurs participated in 5 places: the NBT section was a guest at the MIRA Public Observatory in Grimbergen, HAC at EnergyVille in Genk, MWV and KTK at the Vives Hogeschool in Roeselare, LVN at the KU Leuven and TLS in its own club room.

The NBT (MIRA people's observatory, Grimbergen) reported:

Like every year, our club again took part in the Day of Science in collaboration with the Volks observatory Mira. In total almost 300 visitors came to Grimbergen.

In the workshop "Build your electronic dice", 18 children could gain their first experience with the soldering iron. Some really had a taste for it and came to us right from the workshop of the Leuven section. Everyone went home with a working dice and a big smile.

The giant Tetris caught the attention of young and old. While the little one played the game, more than one parent also went to the back to find out how we made this game. Flickering lights always work!

The station was staffed all day long and contacts were made with both OR and VHF with the OR18NBT call. On the big screen the video of the RSGB played with Dutch subtitles to show all facets of our hobby.

Read all the reports at

The RSGB video Amateur Radio a hobby for the 21st century is available at

Video of Galileo Sat Nav system talk

Bernhard Isemann OE3BIA / PA3BI gave a talk on the Galileo GNSS constellation at the ÖVSV Amateur Radio Center on Wednesday, November 27

While the slides were in English Bernhard gave the talk in German. Fortunately YouTube makes it understandable, simply Click the CC icon then in Settings (cog icon next to CC) select Auto-translate->English

Watch video at

Philippines: Amnesty for unregistered ham radio rigs

Philippines communications regulator NTC has announced an amnesty for those who haven't registered their Amateur Radio equipment

They have until December 23 to register and pay the fees which are:

A. VHF and UHF Equipment
- Portable     500 Php
- Mobile/Base  700 Php
- Repeater    1000 Php

B. HF Radio Equipment 1200 Php

Read the Philippines Amateur Radio Association (PARA) post at

New England Hams you might run across 75 meters.........

K1TP- Jon....Editor of As The World Turns....
KB1OWO- Larry...
Handsome Fellow ,Only cuts lawn in August, plows snow the rest in Jackman, Maine
W1GEK- Big Mike....Nearfest Cook, big motor home, electronics software engineer ...
AA1SB- Neil...Living large traveling the country with his girlfriend...loves CW
N1YX- Igor....peddles quality Russian keys, software engineer
K1BGH...Art.....Restores cars and radio gear, nice fella...
N1XW.....Mike-easy going, Harley riding kind of guy!
K1JEK-Joe...Easy going, can be found at most ham flea market ...Cobra Antenna builder..
KA1GJU- Kriss- Tower climbing pilot who cooks on the side at Hosstrader's...
W1GWU-Bob....one of the Hosstrader's original organizers, 75 meter regular, Tech Wizard!!!
K1PV- Roger....75 meter regular, easy going guy...
W1XER...Scott....easy going guy, loves to split cordwood and hunt...
WS1D- Warren- "Windy" - Bullnet
KB1VX- Barry- the picture says it all, he loves food!
KC1BBU- Bob....the Mud Duck from the Cape Cod Canal, making a lot of noise.
W1STS- Scott...philosopher, hat
KB1JXU- Matthew...75 meter regular...our token liberal Democrat out of VT

KA1BXB-Don....75 meter Regular......residing on the Cape of Cod, flying planes and playing radio
KMIG-Rick....75 Meter Regular....teaches the future of mankind, it's scary!
K1PEK-Steve..Founder of Davis-RF....my best friend from high school 

K9AEN-John...Easy going ham found at all the ham fests
K1BXI- John.........Dr. Linux....fine amateur radio op ....wealth of experience...
K1BQT.....Rick....very talented ham, loves his politics, has designed gear for MFJ...
W1KQ- Jim-  Retired
Air Force Controller...told quite a few pilots where to go!
N1OOL-Jeff- The 3936 master plumber and ragchewer...
K1BRS-Bruce- Computer Tech of 3936...multi talented kidney stone passing ham...
K1BGH- Arthur, Cape Cod, construction company/ice cream shop, hard working man....
W1VAK- Ed, Cape Cod, lots of experience in all areas, once was a Jacques Cousteus body guard....
K1BNH- Bill- Used to work for a bottled gas company-we think he has been around nitrous oxide to long .

Silent KeyVA2GJB- Graham...one of the good 14313 guys back in the day.
Silent Key K1BHV- David...PITA
Silent Key W1JSH- Mort...Air Force man
Silent Key K1MAN--Glen....PITA
Silent KeyKB1CJG-"Cobby"- Low key gent can be found on many of the 75 meter nets.........
Silent KeyWB1AAZ- Mike, Antrim, NH, auto parts truck driver-retired

Silent KeyWB1DVD- Gil....Gilly..Gilmore.....easy going, computer parts selling, New England Ham..
Silent Key W1OKQ- Jack....3936 Wheeling and Dealing......keeping the boys on there toes....
Silent Key W1TCS- Terry....75 meter regular, wealth of electronic knowledge...
Silent Key WIPNR- Mack....DXCC Master, worked them all!.. 3864 regular for many years...
Silent Key
WILIM- Hu....SK at 92... 3864 regular for many years...
Silent Key N1SIE- Dave....Loves to fly
Silent Key:
N1WBD- Big Bob- Tallest ham, at 6'10", of the 3864 group
Silent Key: W1FSK-Steve....Navy Pilot, HRO Salesman, has owned every radio ever built!
Silent Key: W4NTI-Vietnam Dan....far from easy going cw and ssb op on 14275/313
Silent Key:K1FUB-Bill- Loved ham radio....


tr> 14275/313
Silent Key:K1FUB-Bill- Loved ham radio....